Brieva prison, Spain: Mónica Caballero on Operation Pandora

If I were to choose a different life I would not change it for anything

I vividly remember the intoxicating feeling that came over me when I began to question authority; I remember the many contradictions and questions. In this discovery of ideas I found many people that made their ideas into material practices in their libraries, publications, social centres, etc. … in their everyday life … they lived the ideas in the here and now. It did not take long for me to want to do the same.

I remember the anxiety I felt when I heard there were comrades incarcerated for putting their ideas of freedom into practice; sisters of ideas in all corners of the world in the jaws of the panoptic beast. That distressing feeling never changed, but is accompanied by gestures of solidarity.

We are many, the anarchists that find ourselves on the other side of the big wall, and after Tuesday, December 16th, our numbers have grown.

The tentacles of Power dropped into anarchist spaces, libertarian social centres, squatted houses and residences of several acratists in Catalonia and Madrid. The hunt captured eleven comrades; of these seven have been kept in prison, accused of belonging to an armed gang terrorist in nature. It is no coincidence that the arrestees are part of my immediate circle; indeed, more than half of them frequently visited me in prison. The judicial-policial gavel has punished solidarity.

I cannot keep silent before such misery; the State’s repressive revenge borders delirium. The information media (spokespeople of dominators) talk about chiefs and subordinates; I stress to them and anyone who harbours any doubts: We are anti-authoritarians; no one is above me, nor am I above anyone!

The spaces attacked in Catalonia were not arbitrarily targeted; firstly, the Kasa de la Muntanya is an important symbol of squatting, and having maintained distance from the capitalist logic for 25 years, they have made their contribution to a great many generations of dissidents to this system of terror. The libertarian social centres and anarchist spaces that were struck never hid their ideals, providing a fertile ground for sowing the seeds of freedom.

The costs in this struggle for the reclamation of our lives are very high; nobody said it would be easy, but undoubtedly if I were to choose a different life I would not change it for anything. In this fight against domination no cages or walls can silence our voices, but without you, comrades, our voices are only transformed in echoes.

If any of you, my beloved comrades recently incarcerated, are ever able to read these words, I tell you that I’m certain you will remain incorruptible and rise to the occasion as you always have.

I remember every time I read or heard that solidarity is a necessary weapon for anarchists. Today, I hope that those memories come true … making our ideas into action.

Penitentiary Centre of Brieva, December 2014.